According to Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Tyronn Lue, J.R. Smith will make his return in the next 10-14 days.
"They're saying he's been looking better and better every day, he had a good workout yesterday, so hopefully we get him back soon," Lue said per cleveland.com.
Smith is currently traveling with the team on their three-game road trip that wraps up Saturday against the Miami Heat. He has been out since Dec. 20 since breaking his thumb against the Milwaukee Bucks. He then underwent surgery on Dec. 23 to repair the fracture and the team said he’d be out 12-14 weeks. Currently, he is 10 weeks removed from surgery. Prior to the Cavs’ recent games, Smith has been going through various workouts on the court.
His return would get the Cavs one step closer to full strength with Kevin Love still recovering from knee surgery. Lue also will have to reincorporate Smith into the lineup at the same time he figures out how to fit Deron Williams and Andrew Bogut into the rotation. At this time, it’s unclear if Smith could start or come off the bench upon his return. On most nights, Iman Shumpet has started at shooting guard.
If Smith does return in 10 days, that would mean he could play on March 14 against the Detroit Pistons. If he returns in 14 days, he could play on March 18 against the Los Angeles Clippers. Smith also did tell a ESPN sideline reporter during the game that he lobbied the team to let him play Friday.
Prior to his injury, Smith had appeared in 21 games and averaged 8.6 points while shooting 36.2 percent from three. He is in the first year of a four-year, $57 million deal he signed with the team in October just before the start of the season.